Unicorn Season
Bloomberg Businessweek|April 1, 2019 - Double Issue

Do the impending IPOs of Uber, Pinterest, Airbnb, and others mean the bull market is ending?

Michael P. Regan

Psst! Someone knows something about the markets that you don’t.

That’s the vibe on Wall Street these days, at least among those prone to occasional bouts of what could generously be called caution—or not-so-generously called paranoia.

Federal Reserve policymakers see something the rest of us don’t, the thinking goes, and that’s why they have all but canceled interest-rate hikes once planned for 2019. Bond traders obviously know something stock investors are missing, so they’ve inverted the yield curve by pushing yields on 10-year Treasuries below rates on three-month bills in a classic harbinger of a recession.

And will you get a load of this herd of unicorns prancing their way toward initial public offerings? Clearly their bankers have whispered in their ears, alerting them that the grass is high in public markets and now is the time to graze because a drought is coming.

The “Fed knows something” concern is easy enough to dismiss for anyone who has even a cursory familiarity with the central bank’s track record as a fortune-teller. The yield curve inversion is harder to ignore, given its habit of arriving on the scene before recessions, though a “this time is different” case can be made because of the lingering effects of the central banks’ massive intervention in bond markets following the global financial crisis.

Continue reading your story on the app

Continue reading your story in the magazine

MORE STORIES FROM BLOOMBERG BUSINESSWEEKView All

High Stakes On the Lake

Justin Bibb wants to be Cleveland’s next mayor. If he beats Kevin Kelley, he’ll inherit serious problems—and a windfall to fix them

5 mins read
Bloomberg Businessweek
October 18 - 25, 2021

Black hairstyles need PROTECTION

In most U.S. states, employers and schools are allowed to discriminate against box braids, locs, and other traditional styles. A coalition of activists and legislators has started to change that.

10+ mins read
Bloomberg Businessweek
October 18 - 25, 2021

Can twitter get us to be nice?

Social networks are all designed to make people angry and keep them coming back for more. Now, one of the worst offenders is trying to be less of a hellscape

10+ mins read
Bloomberg Businessweek
October 18 - 25, 2021

Let's Make Covid Testing Part of Our Morning Routine

A Harvard immunologist champions low-cost, at-home rapid tests to beat the pandemic

6 mins read
Bloomberg Businessweek
October 18 - 25, 2021

Big Sky's Moment of Glory

The most rugged resort in Montana gets speedy lifts, luxury hotels, and fine dining to match its extreme slopes

6 mins read
Bloomberg Businessweek
October 18 - 25, 2021

Homeopath, heal thyself

Natalie Grams believed—really believed—in the healing power of homeopathy. Then a health crisis of her own forced the German physician to question her faith

10+ mins read
Bloomberg Businessweek
October 18 - 25, 2021

Stuck on the Sidelines of The U.S. Job Market

Conversations with some of the 5 million out-of-work Americans shed light on why so many jobs are going begging

8 mins read
Bloomberg Businessweek
October 18 - 25, 2021

DE-radicalizing the Extremists

Parents for Peace enlists ex-believers to help families win back loved ones drawn to Islamism, QAnon, and other ideologies. Demand has never been higher

10+ mins read
Bloomberg Businessweek
October 18 - 25, 2021

The Hunt for the Most Lucrative Patients

Privately run Medicare Advantage programs get paid more when members look sicker—even if they don’t receive more care

6 mins read
Bloomberg Businessweek
October 18 - 25, 2021

Wall Street's Toughest Turnaround

Jane Fraser is rethinking Citigroup and what it means to work at a megabank

7 mins read
Bloomberg Businessweek
October 18 - 25, 2021